2G: Anil Ambani seeks exemption from appearing as witness

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New Delhi, 25 Jul (PTI): Reliance ADA Group Chairman Anil Ambani, who has been summoned to appear tomorrow as a prosecution witness in the 2G case, today approached a Delhi court seeking exemption from personal appearance due to “pre-scheduled” business engagements.

Ambani filed an application before Special CBI Judge O P Saini, saying he had received the summon on July 23 and “owing to extremely short notice of just two days”, it would not be possible for him to appear before it.

“I wish to state that owing to the extremely short notice of just over two days and my large number of pre-scheduled and pre-committed business engagements, it will not be possible for me to travel to Delhi on July 26, 2013,” he said, adding that he would appear before the court any day after August 15.

“I request your honour to kindly grant an adjournment for my appearance and fix a new date at any time after August 15, 2013 at your convenience,” Ambani said.

Earlier, during the day, the Supreme Court had refused to give an urgent hearing on the plea of Reliance Telecom Ltd (RTL) challenging the trial court’s order summoning Ambani and his wife Tina Ambani as prosecution witnesses in the 2G case.

The apex court has posted RTL’s application for hearing on Monday before a special bench, comprising justices Singhvi and K S Radhakrishnan, which is hearing all the matters pertaining to the 2G scam.

The special court had allowed CBI’s plea that the testimony of Anil and Tina Ambani may throw light on alleged investment of over Rs 990 crore by his group companies in Swan Telecom, facing trial in the case along with its promoters Shahid Usman Balwa and Vinod Goenka.

The court had said CBI’s plea to summon Ambani, his wife and 11 others as prosecution witnesses was essential for arriving at a just decision in the case.

Testimony of Anil and Tina Ambani is required to prove the facts “pertaining to incorporation of shell companies as some of the witnesses examined earlier have not been able to do so,” the trial court had said.

The court had dismissed the contentions of the counsel for the accused persons that CBI’s plea “suffers from the vice of delay”, saying the process of examination of prosecution witnesses is still underway.

RADAG’s company RTL is an accused in the case. Three top Reliance ADAG executives Gautam Doshi, Surendra Pipara and Hari Nair are also facing trial in the case.

CBI has alleged RTL used Swan Telecom, an ineligible firm, as its front company to get 2G licences and radio waves.

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